Established in 1962 with their flagship in North Hollywood, Val Surf is a "well known destination spot for team riders, movie stars, and families alike" and boasts "one of the biggest selections of skateboards and skate shoes in the country!"
Val Surf not only carries their namesake brand, but also various women's, men's, and kids' brands: Volcom Girls, RVCA, Billabong, O'Neill, just to name a few, and the store even has onesies by Enspyre!
If you are not lucky enough to visit one of Val Surf's five stores, you can check out and order their merchandise online at ValSurf.com.
LF Stores, with its Beverly Hills location off Robertson Avenue, is probably one of my favorite boutique chains, ever. While I love to look at their online store at LFstores.com and have ordered many items (from shoes to dresses to jewelry) from them in the past, the online store does not make my heart nearly as happy as when I step into the actual store.
With hard-to-find brands such as Milau, Car Mar, Emma & Sam, and Funky Monkey Shoes, LF Stores has been featured in magazines due to the store's celebrity shoppers. Unfortunately, I will not be visiting the store on this trip, so the online (LFstores.com) 60% Off Entire Fall & Winter Sale will have to satiate for now.
San Francisco Shopping
There are many fantastic and unique boutiques in San Francisco: the only hinge is that if you're not a local, you may just end up at the Westfield San Francisco Shopping Centre (The Westfield is a good mall but a mall all the same).
The local shopper knows that there are roughly five different fashion districts: Hayes Valley, North Beach, The Mission, Pacific Heights, and Sacramento Street.
Hayes Valley (located and centered on Hayes Street, and between Franklin west to Laguna) is claimed by many to be the area's best shopping. Filled not only with boutiques, Hayes Valley also has restaurants, art galleries, and designs studios. The best part? Hayes Valley does not house any big-name chain store.
North Beach (off Grant Avenue) was once the prime location in San Francisco for the Beat Generation. While embracing its Italian and hippie heritage, today North Beach still thrives with stores such as AB Fits (SF denim store since 1990), Alla Prima (European lingerie), and Ooma ("our dresses seduce, our tops charm, our skirts flirt").
The Mission District (area of parallel streets Vallenica and Mission, from 16th St south to 24th) is for the eclectic shopper, not the conformist. And with stores Dema (godemago.com) and Laku (lakuyaeko.com), how could "The Mission" be anything but?
Pacific Heights (north side of California Street and along Fillmore Street, south of Pacific Avenue) mixes the boutique chains (Betsey Johnson) with the speciality stores (Flicka, Scandinavian apparel and accessories). The result? Just enough of a little something for everyone!
Sacramento Street (west on Sacramento Street, from Broderick to Spruce) is home to the boutiques The Firm and Sarah Shaw, both great funky little shops in their own right. If you are looking for something you can't find in a department store, this is the place to be!